Coronary Heart Disease – 7 Key Steps to Reduce Your Risk Of Coronary Heart Disease

This article will tell you what you need to know about coronary heart disease, and will give you 7 key steps you can take, starting now, to reduce your risk of coronary heart disease.

What is Coronary Heart Disease?

Coronary heart disease, which is also known as atherosclerosis, is a condition in which the arteries responsible for carrying oxygen to your heart muscle are blocked by accumulations of plaque. If you are in an early stage of the disease, you probably have no symptoms, and your doctor may not even be able to tell that you have the disease. But later, when the disease has progressed over the course of many years, it can cause sudden death because the arteries can’t get enough blood to the heart muscle to keep it functioning. Coronary heart disease ranks among the top causes of death for men and women.

What Causes Coronary Heart Disease?

There is no single cause of coronary heart disease. However, doctors and researchers have identified certain risk factors that can heighten the risk that you may have this deadly disease. The important risk factors include family history, high cholesterol, obesity, smoking, and high blood pressure. While you can’t change your family history, you may be able to reduce your risk of coronary heart disease by controlling some of the other risk factors.

7 Key Steps to Reduce Your Risk

1. See your doctor for a cholesterol test and angiogram

If you are concerned about the risk of coronary heart disease, start by seeing your doctor. The doctor should take an angiogram, which measures your heart’s activity, and order a blood test that will measure your cholesterol levels.

2. Lower your total cholesterol level

If your total cholesterol is over 200 mg/dl, you should take steps to reduce it. Exercise and diet are the best means to reduce total cholesterol.

3. Exercise regularly

Most doctors now recommend 30 minutes of aerobic exercise — like walking, jogging, swimming, or bicycling — 5 days a week.

4. Quit smoking

If you smoke, quit now. Smoking is a significant risk factor for coronary heart disease as well as for lung cancer.

5. Take a low-dose aspirin every day

Some evidence indicates that a low-dose aspirin every day can reduce the risk of death from coronary heart disease.

6. Reduce your dietary consumption of animal fats, especially from red meat.

Reducing your consumption of animal fat will reduce your dietary cholesterol, which in turn should reduce your blood cholesterol.

7. Increase your dietary consumption of fresh fruits and whole grains.

Increasing your consumption of fruits and whole grains will also help to reduce your blood cholesterol.

Other Steps You Can Take

In addition to the seven key steps above, some doctors now think that drinking alcohol in moderation can reduce the risk of coronary heart disease. You may want to have a drink or a glass of red wine each evening.

Doctors now measure two different kinds of cholesterol – HDL or “good” cholesterol, and LDL or “bad” cholesterol. Depending on the results of your blood cholesterol test, your doctor may recommend that you increase your HDL cholesterol level and decrease your LDL cholesterol level.

This article has outlined 7 key steps for reducing your risk of coronary heart disease. By following the steps in this article, together with your doctor’s advice, it’s very likely that you can reduce your risk of succumbing to this killer disease. Plus, you will enjoy life more and feel better if you make the recommended lifestyle changes.

Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease – Is There a Natural, Non-Invasive Way to Treat Heart Disease?

Statistics show that almost every second man and woman in the industrialized world, dies from the consequences of Coronary Artery Disease — most often simply referred to, as Heart Disease, or Cardiovascular Disease.

Plaque deposits that cause blockages in the Coronary Arteries, the first blood vessels that branch off from the Aorta — can lead to sudden heart attacks. If the same blockages occur in arteries supplying blood to the brain, then this can lead to a stroke. Sadly, many people miss the preliminary signs and symptoms of Heart Disease and so often their first ‘symptom’ is sudden death.

The epidemic spread of cardiovascular diseases, is largely due to the fact that until now, the true nature of atherosclerosis and coronary heart disease has been insufficiently understood.

Conventional medicine is largely confined to treating the symptoms of heart disease. Treatments such as calcium antagonists, beta-blockers, nitrates and other drugs are prescribed to alleviate angina pain. Surgical procedures, such as angioplasty and bypass surgery — are applied to mechanically improve blood flow. Rarely does conventional medicine target the underlying problem: the instability of the vascular walls, which triggers the development of atherosclerotic deposits.

Can you prevent and reverse heart disease without invasive procedures and avoid the complications of bypass surgery?

The answer is yes. Cellular Medicine provides a breakthrough in our understanding of the underlying causes of cardiovascular conditions, and leads to the effective prevention and treatment of coronary heart disease. The wonderful benefit of utilizing cellular medicine, is that the complications of bypass surgery are avoided.

According to many nutritional researchers, the primary cause of coronary heart disease and other forms of atherosclerotic disease — is a chronic deficiency of essential nutrients in millions of vascular wall cells. This deficiency leads to the instability of the vascular walls — thereby leading to lesions and cracks, atherosclerotic deposits, and eventually, heart attacks or strokes. Since the primary cause of cardiovascular disease, is a deficiency of essential nutrients in the cells of the vascular walls — the daily optimum intake of these essential nutrients is the primary measure to prevent atherosclerosis and help repair artery wall damage.

Scientific research and clinical studies have already documented the particular value of vitamin C, vitamin E, beta-carotene and other ingredients in the prevention of heart disease — but what if you are already suffering from the symptoms of this disease?

One vocal proponent of using nutrition in the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular disease, is Matthias Rath, M.D. In Dr Rath’s book, “Why Animals Don’t Get Heart Attacks — But People Do!”, he outlines his theories about why optimum nutrition is so vital and can not only prevent, but even reverse heart disease. Dr. Rath believes that there are specific, essential nutrients that help to prevent cardiovascular disease and repair existing damage.

Vitamin research and cardiovascular disease.

One of the largest studies about the importance of vitamins in the prevention of cardiovascular disease, was conducted in Europe. It is a well-known fact, that cardiovascular diseases are more frequent in northern European countries, compared to Mediterranean countries.

Professor K.F. Gey, from the University of Berne in Switzerland, compared the rate of cardiovascular disease in these countries — to the blood levels of vitamin C and beta-carotene, as well as cholesterol. His findings were remarkable:

* People in Northern European countries have the highest rate of cardiovascular disease, and on average, the lowest blood levels of vitamins.

* Southern European populations, have the lowest cardiovascular risk and the highest blood levels of vitamins.

* An optimum intake of the vitamins C, E and A — had a much greater impact on decreasing the risk for cardiovascular disease than lowering cholesterol levels, a frequent focal point in conventional medicine.

This study finally provides the scientific answer as to why there is such a lower rate of heart attacks — in France, Greece and other Mediterranean countries, when compared to the norm. The key factor for the lower cardiovascular risk in these countries, is the high intake of nutrition through the regular diets of these regions. Certain dietary preferences, such as the consumption of wine and olive oil, which are rich in bioflavonoids and vitamin E seem to be of particular importance.

Supplementation – Your defense against heart disease.

With our modern lifestyle and eating choices, it is simply not that easy to get all the nutrients we need from our diet alone. This is why so many people choose to supplement their diet with nutritional supplements such as vitamins and antioxidants. If your aim is to prevent diseases such as heart disease — then supplementation has become more than just a ‘quaint health fad’ — it’s more a matter of life and death.

What are the best supplements to take for problems with the cardiovascular system?

Many people know of the general benefits of nutrients, such as vitamins, antioxidants, fish oil etc. But what is specifically good for the heart and cardiovascular system? Here are some suggestions:

* Vitamin C: provides protection and promotes the natural healing of the artery wall and the reversal of plaque

* Vitamin E: provides antioxidant protection

* Vitamin D: optimizes calcium metabolism and the reversal of calcium deposits in the artery wall

* Folic acid, Biotin and B Vitamins: provide a protective function against increased homocysteine levels

* Copper: supports stability of the artery wall with the improved cross-linking of collagen molecules

* Bioflavonoids, Grape Seed Extract and Pine Bark Extract: contain antioxidant nutrients and molecules known as ‘OPCs’ which act as biocatalysts for improved vitamin C function and improved stability of the artery wall

The most specific supplement formula for cardiovascular disease, would have to be what is known as an Oral Chelation Therapy supplement. This type of formula, is a blend of nutrients designed to heal and tone the cardiovascular system, as well as ‘chelate’ or ‘claw out’ the excess plaque and calcium buildup in the arteries. Oral Chelation Therapy is not as widely available as the individual nutrients mentioned before – however its specific formula provides the best combination of nutrients to fully assist the body in its healing processes — so that one can prevent and even reverse the onset of cardiovascular diseases.

Heart Disease Increase in the Young

It was reported in the news recently that strokes are increasing in the young. The percentage of young people between the age of 22 and 45 who had a stroke in 2005 is up 7.3% from 1993 to 1994 when it was only 4.5%. What really seems to be distressing about this,is that many of those who sought medical attention were misdiagnosed. One young 18-year-old who was experiencing numbness in his arm was diagnosed as being intoxicated. The truth of the matter, he was having a stroke. Unfortunately strokes in the young are not as uncommon as once thought.

Heart Disease Begins in Childhood

We now know that heart disease begins in childhood and unfortunately in many Americans it is well advanced by the age of 30. Many aggressive kinds of heart disease occur in individuals who have a total Cholesterol under 200. Autopsies done on soldiers killed in the Korean war revealed that 3 quarters of them had significant atherosclerosis in the arteries of their heart. A Study done on Vietnam casualties revealed much the same but the atherosclerosis was not as severe. You would hope that this study was showing that people were taking better care of themselves.

However another study was done in the 1990′s on young people killed by homicide our accident. The findings were depressing. 80 percent of the young people who were of the average age 26 had significant atherosclerotic lesions in their coronary arteries. Recent studies showed that 10 to 30 percent of boys and girls already have coronary arteries that are covered in foam cells. Foam cells are the cells that began the formation of plaque. By age thirty-five 20 to 50% of the surface area of the artery is covered with these foam cells. So what are the risk factors we need to be aware of? What is behind the increase in strokes among the young? Some of the possible reasons for the increase in strokes among young adults are risk factors such as diabetes, obesity, and coronary heart disease. This would suggest that the younger population is not taking care of themselves with regard to their eating habits and lifestyles. An increase in obesity correlates with the higher chances of developing diabetes and heart disease. Of course, diabetes and heart disease are major risk factors for strokes.

What are the risk factors associated with strokes?

According to the American stroke Association high blood pressure is the leading cause of stroke and the most important controllable risk factor for stroke. Cigarette smoking is also an important risk factor for heart disease and stroke. Nicotine and carbon monoxide in cigarette smoke damage the cardiovascular system, especially the arterial lining. Diabetes is in itself an independent risk factor for a stroke. Many people who have diabetes also have high blood pressure, high blood cholesterol and are overweight. This increases your chances of having a stroke even more. Poor diet is also another risk factor for heart disease. Diets high in sodium make for an increase in blood pressure. Diets with excessive calories can contribute to obesity and provide no real nutritional benefits. Did anyone say “Fast-food”? On the other end of the spectrum, it is suggested that a diet containing five or more servings of fruits and vegetables per day may reduce the risk factor. Physical inactivity is also a risk factor for heart attacks and strokes. Being inactive, obese or both can increase the risk for high blood pressure, high cholesterol diabetes heart disease and stroke.

Education is the Cure

Unfortunately heart disease and it’s realated problems will end the lives of more people than all other diseases combined. The reason for this is that the majority of people are still unaware of how to avoid it. Most of the public recognizes that the risk for heart disease increases with bad cholesterol or LDL cholesterol. Other factors include diabetes, obesity and a poor diet increase the risk factors for heart disease. Another important fact with regard to the disease is that the earlier the intervention that one takes with regard to heart disease the better chance an individual has of overcoming it. The Framingham study, the largest study to date on heart disease tells us that the average LDL cholesterol of all people who have a heart attack is only 150. What is important to recognize with regard to this is that LDL cholesterol is made up of many particles and it is those particles that carry the most risk for heart disease. The real threat comes from when cholesterol oxidizes. Oxidize cholesterol magnifies its ability to maim and destroy. The key to prevention of heart disease is educating oneself with regard to the risk factors personally involved, knowing the right diet for the individual, knowing the right exercise and what supplements if any to take.

How To Cheat And Avoid Heart Disease Naturally

CHEATING HEART DISEASE

How To Cheat And Avoid Heart Disease Naturally

Heart disease is the number one cause of death in the United States. More than one million people a year die of heart disease and thirty percent of all deaths in the United States are due to heart disease. Your odds of dying of heart disease are one in four. Often, heart disease is caused by how we live and what we eat. By taking the right steps, you can greatly improve those odds in your favor. “If you have heart disease, it’s possible to reverse its progress and bring your arteries to healthier condition,” says Julian Whitaker, M.D., founder and director of the Whitaker Wellness Center in Newport Beach, California.

Heart disease can take a number of forms, including: Angina: is a heavy, tight pain in the chest that happens after some type of exertion. This is caused by when the blood vessels narrow and fail to supply the heart with the proper amount of oxygen. Heart Attack: occurs when the coronary arteries that carry oxygen to the heart muscles become obstructed.

Hypertension: is also known as high blood pressure and is common. If untreated, it greatly increases the risk of heart attack and heart failure.

Heart Failure: is caused by an inadequate flow of blood from the heart.

Healthy Heart Nutrition: The following are nutritional supplements that help keep your cardiovascular health in excellent shape.

Coenzyme Q10: This incredible nutrient increases oxygenation of heart tissue and has been shown to prevent recurrences in persons who have had a heart attack. Coenzyme Q10 stimulates the body to form ATP, a key chemical for producing energy in every cell. When a heart attack occurs, a large part of the heart muscle is destroyed, and the muscle that is left over tries to do the entire job of keeping the heart pumping. Because of this, the heart begins to do a poor job of pumping blood to the rest of the body. This can lead to swollen ankles, fatigue and shortness of breath and is known as congestive heart failure. Your heart needs more energy. Stephen T. Sinatra, M.D., a cardiologist and director of the New England Heart Center in Manchester, Connecticut believes that the supplement Coenzyme Q10 can give the heart cells more energy. “I personally use it in every one of my patients with congestive heart failure if they are willing to take it,” say Dr. Sinatra. “It has a considerable impact on their quality of life.”

There have been many studies around the world concluding that Coenzyme Q10 is an effective treatment for heart disease. Its efficacy and safety has been well established instudies and clinical trials. One study, published in the Journal of Clinical Pharmacology in 1990, found that Coenzyme Q10 reduced the frequency of angina attacks by up to 46%, while increasing the capacity for physical activity in those patients. In another study, R.B. Singh, from the Heart Research Laboratory at the Medical Hospital and Research Center in Moradabad, India, announced to the International Coenzyme Q10 Association that, in a double-blind trial of 144 patients, the supplement was responsible for a significant reduction in angina, arrhythmias and left ventricular dysfunction. Cardiac deaths were also much lower in the Coenzyme Q10 group than in the control group.

L-Carnitine. Studies on the beneficial effects of L-Carnitine on the cardiovascular system have been conducted since 1937. L-Carnitine benefits the cardiovascular system in many ways. It is responsible for clearing fatty acids, triglycerides, out of the blood into the mitochondria (the energy powerhouse of the cells) to be broken down. Studies have shown that the important functions of L-Carnitine include: improving heart muscle function,stimulating energy supply to the heart, increasing endurance, increasing cardiac output and regulating heart arrythmias. L-Carnitine, an amino acid, also works with Coenzyme Q10 to reduce angina pain and the frequency of attacks than those who take Coenzyme Q10 by itself. Researchers believe that, without L-Carnitine, the heart’s cells can’t make energy from fats. Instead, they burn sugar, or glucose, for energy. This, in combination with narrowed vessels that deprive the heart of oxygen, leads to lactic acid buildup, which in turn causes the pain of angina.

Vitamin E: Research has shown that without a doubt Vitamin E is good for the heart. In the past several years, the evidence has become so strong that most doctors can’t ignore it. Vitamin E was advocated as an effective treatment for heart disease by Dr. Even Shute of London, Ontario, more than 50 years ago. His findings were described in the scientific journal Nature in 1946. His claims, which were initially dismissed by the medical community, have been confirmed by recent findings from studies and clinical trials.

In The New England Journal of Medicine, Harvard University researchers reported that Vitamin E supplements reduced the risk of coronary heart disease in both men and women. The beneficial amount used was an amount you can obtain only from supplements, not foods. Other impressive results were obtained from a study that has been reported in the very well-respected British medical journal Lancet. Researchers from the University of Cambridge in England gave either Vitamin E or a placebo daily to 2,000 patients with heart disease. The group whom took the Vitamin E for an average of eighteen months had an incredible 77 percent lower incidence of non-fatal heart attacks than the placebo group. The researchers declared Vitamin E more effective in controlling heart attacks than either aspirin or cholesterol lowering drugs. These results were so impressive that the American Heart Association ranked Vitamin E number four on its list of the top ten heart related developments in 1996. The August 1996 issue of American Journal of Clinical Nutrition showed that the use of Vitamin E resulted in a 63% reduction in death from heart attack.

There is even evidence that Vitmin E can help reverse heart disease. Researchers have
found that in monkeys, our close biological relatives, clogged arteries induced by a high-fat diet can noit only be prevented but also reversed by Vitamin E supplementation. In a six year study, Anthony J. Verlangieri, Ph. D., of the University of Mississippi Atherosclerosis Research Laboratory, fed monkeys a high-fat diet that cuased their arteries to become clogged and blocked. When the monkeys were given Vitamin E, the amount of blockage in their arterties that were seriously clogged began to open up. This was from an average of 35 percent artery closure to a 15 percent closure.

Vitamin E can also help protect us from the effects of high fat foods. A study done by cardiologist Gary Plotnick, M.D., at the University of Maryland found that Vitamin E can provide protection against the damaging effects of high fat foods and meals. There is little doubt that Vitamin E is a wonder supplement for the heart.

Green Tea Extract. Studies suggest that green tea extract may help prevent heart disease. Green tea extract contains antioxidants and flavonoids which have been shown to inhibit abnormal platelet aggregation that can result in blood clots that can cause a heart attack or stroke.
Magnesium. This mineral is necessary for the proper functioning of the heart. It helps improve circulation, reduce angina, and help lower blood pressure.

Vitamin C. This vitamin is important because it has been shown to reduce serum cholesterol. Vitamin C plays a role in moving cholesterol from the arteries to the liver, where it is converted into bile acids and then eliminated along with fiber. Vitamin C also helps repair damaged arterial walls, which prevents cholesterol deposits from forming.

One of the most significant reports about the benefits of Vitamin C was done in 1992 at UCLA. The study involved 11,348 participants over a 10 year period, showed that Vitamin C prolonged average lifespan and reduced mortality from cardiovascular disease by 42 percent. In another study, published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology in 1998, show that low levels of Vitamin C can help contribute to heart disease.

Folic Acid. As our bodies metabolize protein, it converts the amino acid methionine into another amino acid, cystine, making the chemical homocysteine as a result. High levels of homocysteine can have a direct, toxic effect on the coronary arteries, damaging them. As much as 30 percent of all heart disease is directly caused by high homocysteine levels. Folic acid can help bring blood homocysteine to safe levels. The Annual Review of Medicine has reported that “supplementation with B vitamins, in particular with folic acid, is an efficient, safe and inexpensive means to reduce an elevated homocysteine level. The basis for these conclusions is data from about 80 clinical and epidemiological studies including more than 10,000 patients.

Hawthorn Berry. This herb has the ability to help dilate coronoary arteries and improve the metabolic function of heart muscle. Although the FDA claims that taking 1 baby aspirin daily can reduce the risk of heart attack without side effects, Harvard Medical School says that there is no sufficient evidence to support this. Remember, if you do use aspirin, it can cause internal bleeding and stomach ulceration.